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The Nolan remake is decent, and Robin Williams is great in it, but the original had a sense of gloom that Nolan probably couldn't recreate, even if he'd tried.
Totally agree. Definitely the original.
I like both but I find the original just a bit TOO atmospheric at times. Its constant sense of dread is at first engaging but after a while, I just found myself feeling slightly bored and desperately wanting a joke to come by. The remake has its atmosphere too, but it never felt quite as heavy or oppressive as the original. That's not to say Skjoldbjærg's film is without merit though, as it does feel a bit more grey and morally complex than the Nolan film. The remake does feel somewhat more streamlined, especially towards the end. The original also contains much more stylistic cinematography and a stronger sense of mise-en-scene and visual storytelling. However, the remake makes up for these things with a more visceral tone, a more thrilling pace, and a tighter script that focuses less on atmosphere but more on intricate plotting. So tough call, but I'm gonna have to go with the remake.
The original is masterfully subtle in the way it creates its atmosphere as well as the way it communicates the plot and Skarsgard's performance is incredibly haunting and undoubtedly the best performance I've ever seen from him.
In contrast, Nolan's remake is often laughable and stupid, Al Pacino did no justice Skarsgard's fantastic performance and the remake also, overall, felt like a less subtle and much less clever retelling of the events in the original with the changes completely destroying what made the original's story more haunting.